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PRESS RELEASE 4 December 2013

BALI MINISTERIAL: INDIAN FARMERS URGE MINISTER SHARMA TO CONTINUE SUPPORT TO FARMERS AND RIGHT TO FOOD
The Indian Coordination Committee of Farmers Movement (ICCFM) reiterates its support to Minister Anand Sharma and the Indian government for taking a strong stance in support of the hungry and small farmers of not just India !ut the entire developing "orld at the #T$s %th ministerial meeting& There is tremendous pressure on the Indian government to accept the 'ali package "hich could result it !eing forced to roll !ack the farmers (rice Support System and the )ational Food Security Act "hich provides su!sidi*ed food to more than +,, million people in India& Mem!ers of ICCFM from 'hartiya -isan .nion -//S and SICCFM are present in 'ali and are closely monitoring the ongoing talks and the stand of the Indian delegation in 'ali& They have !een part of several actions !oth inside and outside of the #T$ venue and demonstrations on the streets of 'ali in order to demand the rights of farmers and the hungry and to keep the #T$ and its free trade agenda out of Agriculture& 0The millions of small farmers in India depend on farming as the main source of their livelihood& Agriculture is not a !usiness in India it is a culture and a "ay of life for the poor& #e "ill not allo" the #T$ or any other free trade deal to endanger the livelihood of millions of our farmers 1 said 2udhvir Singh of '-.& The ICCFM urges the Indian government to deli!erate deeply on its position on agriculture and glo!al trade along "ith Indian farmers after the 'ali talks end and permanently safeguard the interests of Indian farmers and hungry !y ensuring strong national food security la"s that support local production& The #T$ is forcing developing countries to cut already meagre su!sidies to their hungry and poor "hile allo"ing rich to continue huge trade distorting su!sidies to their o"n agri!usiness& At the same time it is forcing developing countries to open their markets to rich country products "hile they face several !arriers to e3porting their o"n products& The (eace Clause in the current 'ali package is an empty promise to developing countries "hich "ill leave them open to challenge in the four year interim period& 0The peace clause is just a "ay to get us to accept the deal eventually "e "ill totally lose our a!ility to produce food and thousands of farmers "ill commit suicide if agriculture imports from rich countries flood our markets 1 said )andini 4airam of -//S& 0#e have communicated our concerns to Minister Sharma here in 'ali& #e "ill "ait to see the stand that the Indian government takes at the end of the talks& If they don5t reject the (eace Clause and protect Indian farmers and hungry then "e "ill come out on the streets all across the country and the conse6uences "ill !e serious 1 said /akesh Tikait of '-.& The ICCFM announced its intention to mo!ili*e in a strength of more than 7 lakh in March 8,79 the e3act form and intensity of the mo!ili*ation "ill depend on the stance taken !y the official Indian delegation here in 'ali and its !ehavior !ack in India&

For more information, please contact:


2udhvir Singh Coordinator and )ational Secretary ICCFM (2udhvir::;yahoo&com) /akesh Tikait Spoksperson '-. Ms& -&S& )andini 4ayaram (resident -//S #omen<s .nit (nandiniksgo"da;gmail&com) Ashlesha -hadse= ashlesha&khadse;gmail&com In 'ali= >?8 +@+?8++%7,+

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